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Asbestos Dangers

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A few years back, it was discovered that asbestos is dangerous to human health. Storm damage can expose you to the dangers of asbestos. It can bring this dangerous material close to your family. But do not worry; some experts are trained to remove asbestos material from your home. 

The asbestos material disperses particles into the air, which are very dangerous to human health. Such dispersion requires special equipment to keep your family safe and healthy. 

Why is Asbestos Considered Dangerous 

Asbestos produces small fibers into the air when disturbed. The naked human eye does not see these fibers. When you breathe in these fibers, they go and stick themselves on the lining of your lungs. As they accumulate, they cause a rare type of cancer called malignant mesothelioma. This type of cancer encourages a poor prognosis in your body. 

Asbestos is even dangerous with a little exposure. These fibers can spread to a huge range, and experts use special equipment to determine the locus. Always confirm the material used to build your home. If you find any asbestos material, try and keep a distance from it. But to know the presence, you need an expert’s help. 

What is Asbestos 

You can only see that asbestos is dangerous to human health from above. But what exactly is asbestos. Asbestos is not a chemical but is a natural mineral mined from the ground. Asbestos is grouped into two categories that differ by shape and particle. 

Serpentine asbestos: this group of asbestos has curly fibers. The main type of asbestos in this group is called chrysolite, which is white. Chrysolite asbestos is used to make construction materials because it is considered to be less dangerous. White asbestos is still being used today in many construction industries. 

Amphibole asbestos: this is the dangerous family of asbestos. This family has sharp and needle-like fibers that can pierce soft tissue. This includes the lung lining. When you inhale these sharp fibers, you are at great risk of getting cancer. Some of the types of asbestos in this family are amosite, known as brown asbestos, crocidolite, tremolite, actinolite, and anthophyllite. 

Amosite or brown asbestos is widely used and can even rich 5% of the ACM in the US. Surely asbestos is dangerous because it can also contaminate other ground minerals like vermiculite and talc silica. These two minerals are mainly used as ingredients in consumer products. 

Uses of Asbestos 

The whole of the 19th century and midway of the 20th-century asbestos was widely used in the construction industry. It was known to be fire-resistant, waterproof and it has natural insulation. To add to these wonderful properties, it was cheap and readily available. These excellent qualities made asbestos the king of construction in the old days. 

However, some of the old houses in America still have asbestos material. It was good in making materials like adhesives, ceiling, and floor tiles, drywall, paint, roofing shingles, siding, sealants, and glues.  The automotive industry also used asbestos mainly in making gaskets, transmission plates, and brake pads. 

Main Health Risks from Asbestos 

Scientists warned the world about the health risks of asbestos in the mid 20th century, but manufacturers ignored it. They all wanted profits but put their health at risk. Soon it started to be evident that asbestos is dangerous to human health. Some of the health problems are: 

  1. Mesothelioma 

This is a bad type of cancer that affects the inner soft tissues of your body. But it mainly affects the lungs. This type of mesothelioma is called pleural mesothelioma. The other types affect the heart, testicles, and abdomen. The sharp asbestos fibers cause soft tissue inflammation and then irritate, which eventually develops cancerous. 

  1. Asbestosis 

This lung condition occurs when lungs become inflamed and fully damaged after exposure to asbestos material. This is a chronic lung condition that causes bad irritation in the lungs. The lungs will start to stiffen after some time; hence it will be hard for them to expand. The main symptoms are chest pains and shortened breath, including dry coughs. 

  1. Pleural plaques 

This is the worst medical condition you can get from asbestos exposure. It is when the membranes in your lungs become hard and start to produce some chalky substance. It is a silent disease that develops slowly in your lungs. It may end up being mesothelioma cancer. 

Storm Damage and Asbestos Removal 

When a storm hits your home, and you know that it has asbestos material, then the next thing is to contact an abatement company or remediation company. Such companies must have trained staff and acquired skills to handle asbestos. They must be licensed by the providers and have the required tools to test and remove asbestos. 

Big companies offer both storm damage restoration and asbestos removal services. You can also use DIY methods to remove asbestos after storm damage, but professionals do not encourage it. Expert companies will charge you a good amount of money, but they will leave your home safe for living.

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The Southern California Restoration content team is made up of multiple contributors, writers, and editors. We are your resource hub for anything related to water damage, mold and restoration needs that you may be challenged with facing.